Edit L. Egyed, 78, electrical engineer

Edit L. Egyed
Edit L. Egyed
Posted: April 04, 2014

Edit L. Egyed, 78, of Philadelphia, an electrical engineer who worked for the City of Philadelphia for many years, died Monday, March 24, of a heart attack at Holy Redeemer Hospital.

As a licensed professional engineer, Mrs. Egyed was one of very few women in the 1960s to train and find work in the male-dominated profession.

She was born in Budapest, Hungary, and immigrated to America in 1956. She enrolled at Purdue University's engineering school and when she graduated was only the seventh woman to earn a bachelor of science degree in electrical engineering from Purdue.

Her four decades with the city involved working for various departments, and led her to solving problems in firehouses, police stations, City Hall, and other public buildings.

"She would occasionally get calls in the middle of the night when I was a child, if there was a problem at a power station or if a transformer blew out. And she would be off in the middle of the night to solve the problem," said her son, Christopher. "When there were electrical problems in the jails or prisons, she walked right in among the inmates and did her work without fear."

As a child of nine in Budapest, she noticed that her father entertained a Jewish man every night by playing cards until dawn. Only later did she learn that the man was being harbored by her family to save him from Nazi deportation to the death camps, her son said.

She also told her family of a time when Jewish people were lined up in the streets of Budapest awaiting transport to the camps.

She was dispatched by her father to pay a debt to a tailor in line. The Jews never returned, she told her son.

After World War II, when the Soviets occupied Hungary, Mrs. Egyed wanted to pursue engineering; she was forced instead to study auto mechanics. In the spring of 1956, her family escaped to Austria and from there traveled to the United States, her son said.

In leisure time, she enjoyed gardening, doing Zumba, and cooking and canning. Her hot sauce was renowned.

As a single mother, she doted on her children, making all their Halloween costumes by hand, her son said.

She was married and divorced from another Hungarian immigrant, Alex Egyed. Later, in 1984, Egyed, a wealthy computer executive, shot to death his second wife and two of her friends outside her mansion in Las Vegas before killing himself.

Surviving Mrs. Egyed, besides her son, is daughter Victoria Kligerman.

A visitation is planned for 10 a.m. Thursday, April 3, followed by a 10:30 a.m. Funeral Mass, at St. Christopher Parish, 13301 Proctor Rd.


bcook@phillynews.com

610-313-8102

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